Trump Moving US Embassy to Jerusalem Troubling for Israel-Palestine Peace Process
On December 6th, 2017, Trump stated that the United States would recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, instead of Tel Aviv. This move was one that was quickly condemned by so many in the Middle East and elsewhere. Not only was this move problematic–given the importance of Jerusalem to both those in Israel as well as the Palestinians (who look to have East Jerusalem as a future capital of Palestine), but the action also severely undermines any notion of a willingness for the US to set up a fair peace plan in the region.
Such actions fail to ignore the history of the Israel-Palestinian conflict, and set to further marginalize Palestinian voices in the peace process. There is already a long history of the United States as an unfair broker to this conflict, and this recent development only further cements such a position.
A number of states have come out against such a move, one that they fear will only increase hostilities and tensions for an already highly volatile issue.
Yet, Trump has shown no serious effort (or interest) to work toward a real, legitimate peace that will protect Israelis and Palestinians. These recent actions (along with reports that Jared Kushner was working to prevent a United Nations Security Council vote (in late 2016) on condemning Israeli settlements suggests a Trump administration that is not carefully considering what the conflict is about, as well as an administration that does not care. Moreover, Trump has said little about the illegal settlements that Israel has been building for decades, an issue that is at the heart of the Israel-Palestine conflict.
Such an action (recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel) is likely to only make peace more difficult to reach. Unfortunately, these sorts of actions do not have the civilians in mind, but rather, a political based act such as this one serves the foreign policy interests of the United States, at the expense of Palestinians and Israelis who are fighting for a peaceful resolution to the conflict.